Nope Movie Review

Nope Movie Review

Jordan Peele, director and writer of Get Out and Us, makes his return to the silver screen with his trademark horror and commentary in his new movie, Nope. The film follows the story of OJ (Daniel Kaluuya) and Emerald (Keke Palmer), a pair of siblings who run a struggling horse ranch next to an old western theme park run by Jupe (Steven Yeun), a washed-up child star. Events take an unexpected turn for the two siblings, as they discover something strange flying through the sky, believing it to be an alien. OJ and Emerald, joined by the alien obsessed Angle (Brandon Perea), team up to capture footage of the alien in hopes of make their ranch popular again. Considering the horror genre of the movie, their plan does not go as expected. 

It’s tough to label Nope as solely a horror movie because it leans more towards the suspense and thriller genre. The movie feels very disconnected from Peele’s other works because of its grander scale and tone. Its themes and social commentary are different. With Get Out and Us, viewers could easily identify the commentary, whether it be about racism or classism. However, Nope presents a range of topics, including the treatment of animals, the lengths people will go to for publicity, and the overall state of the movie industry. It requires audience members to strategically determine its key message.

Kaluuya and Palmer are the stand outs of the cast. Their professional relationship helps their sibling relationship. Kaluuya plays OJ, a calm, collected, and distant person who rarely shows his feelings. Palmer plays Emerald, a loud, brash, and exuberant person wearing her emotions on her sleeve.  Another standout comes from Steven Yeun’s character, Jupe, who initially seems like a neighborly friend to OJ and Emerald. However, as the movie progresses, viewers learn ‘pf Jupe’s trauma as a child star. The scene of his traumatic experience is beautifully terrifying and offers depth to Jupe’s character. He is a man who copes by reflecting on this moment with a sense of nostalgia, linking back to the themes of the film.  

The cast brings the film to life and the cinematography adds the mood to create a complete experience. Throughout the film, the grand zoom-outs, showing off the sky or landscape adds to the horror. The threat is not fully shown until the very end, because Peele strategically obscures or cuts immediately to the next scene creating a sense of uneasiness in both the characters and viewers. In fact, some may argue that it feels more like a slasher villain than an otherworldly threat. The design of the antagonist strikes a powerful mix between an alluring and beautiful making it feel more like a Lovecraftian monster, further adding to the horror of it all. 

Overall, Jordan Peele said that he wanted to make a spectacular movie, and general audiences will agree, he definitely succeeded. Everything about this movie was mind blowing from the performances, the cinematography, the horror elements, and even the themes of the story.  Don’t trust our opinion? Check it out for yourself because is one movie that you’ll definitely never say NOPE to!